What benefits does a podcast offer for a brand? Most marketers probably think of building brand awareness, or maybe audience engagement.
The real answer reaches much further. Here are four beneath-the-surface superpowers of a branded podcasts:
Grow a Listenership
No, not an audience. A listenership. Your listenership consists of followers of your podcast who regularly give you their attention for the duration of each episode. A listenership is different from an audience because of the amount of influence you have.
In fact, you have so much influence over your listenership that they’ll likely extend your influence to their own networks by evangelizing your content. They’ll leave positive reviews and encourage their peers to listen to your podcast, which grows your valuable core listenership.
Additionally, a listenership can provide feedback that helps you keep your podcast moving in the right direction.
“[Listeners] really do want to support the podcast they listen to…they will fill out surveys for you at a much higher rate than if you ask for surveys on social media or on a blog, for example.”
Ensuring that you’re producing useful content that meets a need is the key to longevity of your podcast, and your listenership is an essential part of your progress.
Access a target audience that you haven’t been able to reach
Podcasts are a unique form of content. Unlike a blog post, for example, listeners can enjoy podcasts while performing other tasks (like driving, walking the dog, etc).
Additionally, a podcast is much easier to consume than written content. You can dig deeper into topics and deliver a greater amount of information without overwhelming your audience. These qualities give you an opportunity to reach people who normally would not open emails or read blogs, either because they have other things to do or because they do not care to consume written content.
Here’s an example. HubSpot had a robust growth marketing strategy which was reaching an audience of mid-level marketers and entrepreneurs. However, executives and leaders within larger businesses remained an elusive target. Said Anderson:
“They’re not reading blogs, they’ve got no time to do that. They’re not opening newsletters, they’ve got no time to do that. But we do know that they have a commute, from home to work, and many of them are increasingly listening to podcasts.”
In response, HubSpot created a podcast called The Growth Show to reach this new audience with content and a format geared specifically toward their needs. The result has been positive, with data showing that The Growth Show has effectively acquired a listenership that HubSpot had previously been unable to reach using blogs and email marketing.
Guests and Cross-marketing Opportunities
If you’ve ever tried to get a well-known figure within your industry to co-create written content with you, you’ll know that it’s generally a struggle. Written content takes time, and the contributors you seek may not see the value in guest blogging or written interviews.
Podcasts are a whole different ball game. People that normally may not even return your call will often be willing to be podcast guests. Why is this?
Podcast appearances are quick—30 minutes is not a huge commitment.
Podcast appearances are easy, usually conducted by phone or video conference
Podcast appearances are rewarding. Most people enjoy a chance to talk about something they love.
Podcast appearances give guests a chance to access new listeners
Your guests will likely promote the episode to their followers, giving you visibility among their audience. You may also be asked to be a guest on their own podcast, which is another chance to gain awareness.
Do you have a high-value prospect who isn’t responding to the typical sales outreach efforts? Invite them to be on your podcast! This is a great opportunity to initiate a relationship with a potential client so that, eventually, you can demonstrate your solutions and how they can benefit your prospect.